Meeting 2-5
Focus: Trust

The basic structure of this meeting is the same as Meeting 1.1 - refer back for more information.

Some issues may have come up during check-in that the group may wish to spend more time on rather than moving straight into the 'focus'; or perhaps some issue is still to be dealt with from the previous week. When it is appropriate the leader moves the group into the main focus for this meeting.

5) The Big Bit in the middle - the leader announces the focus of the meeting

Focus: Trust

"When you trust someone, as a friend, or business partner, or emotionally intimate partner, or even in your group, you open up yourself to them, and you become vulnerable.The opportunity exists for betrayal."

"Many of us have been betrayed by someone we trusted; sometimes this has had an incredible and unforeseen impact on our lives - why then do we trust?" "What benefit do we get from 'trusting' personal relationships?"

Exercises

  1. Reflect on a significant instance of a trust that was betrayed - How did it impact you?
  2. Have you betrayed someone else's trust? - How? - Why? - How did it affect them?
  3. How do you figure how to trust someone? In a relationship? In a business deal? In group?
  4. Is there someone you don't trust? Why?
  5. Who do you trust? Why?
  6. Reflect on whether you've changed your process over the years of how you decide to trust-Why?

Notes for Meeting 2-5

This meeting is an opportunity for men to release past betrayals that can often be deeply disturbing.

It is also an opportunity for men to reflect on their process of 'trusting someone' - and perhaps achieve some insight or clarity from the wisdom and experience of other men.

Additionally it is an opportunity for men in the group to reflect on their relationships within the group and to contemplate that space and share their thoughts/feelings about each other.

Whether I trust someone or not is my issue - and doesn't have to mean they are not 'trustworthy'.

There is some danger in this process of projecting my fears/doubts onto another man, and blaming or judging him for some other internal issue or past experience that has nothing to do with him. This is something that the leader may need to remind the group of.
Of course it is legitimate and healthy to not trust someone on the basis of their own past actions/statements - we may begin to trust them again as they are able to speak sincerely of their intentions and challenges.